Phlowers & Pheathers – April 30th, Growing in the Garden/The Hummingbirds Return

We have been seeing a small ruby-throated hummingbird for two weeks. It has been visiting the feeder of nectar I have outside the kitchen window. Every other day, I bring the feeder in, soak it in hot, sudsy water, and refill with newly boiled sugar water. (2 Cups water, 1/2 Cup sugar) Hummingbird feeders can spread disease or become contaminated with mold. A great article on feeding hummingbirds can be found at EcoSystem Gardening.

NOTE: Thanks to a reader for the great comment about cleaning with vinegar. I did a bit of research on it and this is a good choice for cleaning the feeder. Also, another good idea is to use a brush to thoroughly clean all the nooks around the feeder openings. Here’s a link to more ideas for cleaning a hummingbird feeder. How to Clean a Hummingbird Feeder.

Mandevilla Vines come in a variety of colors. I chose to grow the pink flowers this year. These vines are beloved by hummingbirds. The vines bloom from Spring until Autumn, they do well in full sun, but also need to be shaded from the hottest late afternoon rays. I am growing the Mandevilla in a pot so that when summer is over I can bring it indoors for the colder months.

My mandevilla flowers are part of Cee’s Flower of the Day and also an entry in this week’s Skywatch Friday.

I have three hanging baskets a yard or two away from the hummingbird feeder. These are filled with plants I know hummingbirds adore. Blue Suede Salvia and Vista Red Salvia, also called sages, have the trumpet-shaped flowers that perfectly fit a hummingbird’s beak and tongue. These plants do great in full sun, but also can take a bit of shade too.

My beautiful Vermillion Cuphea, also known as Firecracker plants, are always a favorite with the hummingbirds. I grow them in the ground and also planted in pots. Last Autumn, the Firecracker plant I grew in a pot easily transferred to the house. It grew well all winter, and this week I placed it outdoors on the patio again. It is doing well, although some of the uppermost leaves, after growing in the lower light of the house, promptly became sunburned. Since I pinched the tops of these stems, new branching will soon leaf out and cover up the scorched top leaves.

Cuphea plants in a row will make a nice seasonal hedge. This plant is perennial in warmer climates.

11 thoughts on “Phlowers & Pheathers – April 30th, Growing in the Garden/The Hummingbirds Return

  1. Got to keep our bees and hummers happy. I think I read the other day it is better to wash the feeder with vinegar instead of soap. I haven’t done this yet but will try to remember .

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Timelesslady

      Thanks again for the great tip. I found quite a bit of good advice, and also to use a brush. I added a note under the first paragraph.

      Like

  2. Timelesslady

    Early this morning I saw a hummingbird fight…two at one time at the feeder, and both were not happy the other was at ‘their’ feeder. Thanks for stopping by and the comment.

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    1. Timelesslady

      We love that Florida heat and talk about what a joy it would be to live there. I would have to switch over to a new way of gardening if we lived in paradise.

      Like

      1. Oh. make no mistake, I love Florida, Florida heat, and living on the Gulf Coast. It just means that either we get a lot of tropical plants for the shade, and a lot of annuals for the sun, since perennials turn into annuals anyway. I hate cold weather. Let me say that again. I hate cold weather, and cold starts at 50 degrees (F). The army put me in some butt cold places. Never again.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Timelesslady

          We were just to Sanibel in the Autumn…did I already say that to you at some point. If so…apologies. We loved it. We are going back this year.

          Liked by 1 person

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